Windstar cruises maintains a fleet of luxury sailing cruise ships. The largest member of their fleet, the Wind Surf, is also the world’s largest sailing vessel.
Historically speaking, the largest ship ever to raise sail on open water was the 211-meter SS Great Eastern, in 1858. The sheer logistical challenge of operating vessels of this size prevented them from gaining popularity however, and sailing ships mostly remained more modest in size until being ultimately replaced by steam, and finally diesel power. While it’s not unusual for modern cargo and diesel powered cruise ships to reach sizes that dwarf even the legendary Titanic, it wasn’t until the 1980s that computer control made enormous sailing ships truly feasible.
The Wind Surf
So what’s the advantage of an enormous sailing cruise ship over a traditional one? At this point, it probably boils down to the pure romance. Originally built in 1990 as Club Med I, the Wind Surf was acquired by Wind Star Cruises in 1998, refitted, and renamed. At a length of 188 meters (just under 100 meters shy of the Titanic), the Wind Surf and her sister ship the Club Med II are the largest sailing vessels afloat today. A sophisticated computer control system governs the positioning of the vessel’s five masts that hoist the better part of 3000 square meters of sail. Seven decks provide opulent accommodation for up to 312 guests and provide space for 191 crewmembers.
For us as lovers of the finer things in life, the most exciting thing about the Wind Surf is the outstanding luxury onboard that awaits passengers. Over cruises ranging from 5-14 days throughout the oceans of the world, guests can look forward to stunning hardwood interiors set with brass fittings, marble baths, and high-end queen size beds. All cabins feature ocean views, flat screen television, and Bose soundsystems. Two ultra-exclusive bridge suites also offer additional private living rooms and private spas. A variety of dining opportunities provide guests with gourmet Mediterranean and international cuisine, as well as light snacks on deck. Additionally, despite being the world’s largest sailing ship, the Wind Surf’s relatively shallow draft means that it can enter ports and harbors that would be impossible for larger cruise ships.
For more information, or to book your next trip, please visit Wind Star Cruises.